DF is looking early on for the Xbox update with PS5 to follow.
Crysis Remastered is patched with support for the new wave of consoles, and Digital Foundry managed to access the Xbox Series X and Series S builds of the upgrade before launch. Due to the way ‘back-compat plus’ titles are distributed, we can not check out the PlayStation 5 building before it launches, but fortunately the wait should not be too long: we were informed today that the update is out now – and we will update this article with PS5 impressions as soon as we can.
Like the recently released 2.1
However, there is a feeling that we are still missing some features that were found in the 2007 game, removed for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions, and which have still not been restored for Crysis Remastered. The granularity of destruction found in the original has still not been patched, volumetric data is still not on par with the PC original, and this effect is completely lacking in the resurrected Ascension stage, although it is present in the PC version of Crysis Remastered. Other OG Crysis features are also paired back or missing: vegetation animation still runs at a lower refresh rate than the rest of the game, while explosions still have no effect on the foliage.
Still, the headline feature of the update is support for the new generation of console hardware, with both series consoles taking advantage of some potentially cool upgrades. Performance mode handles 1080p at a speed of 60 frames per second on both Xbox machines, while quality mode aims at 2160p at 60fps on Series X and a truncated 30fps on Series S. In the meantime, beam tracking mode runs at best 1440p60 on Series X with a truncated 1080p30 on the junior console. The question is really to what extent these performance goals are met during games, even with the inclusion of dynamic resolution scaling to smooth out difficult-to-render content.
Let’s tackle quality mode first. When I first played this on Series X, my perception of a very smooth experience, when I played on an LG CX OLED screen with VRR enabled, was. In my opinion, this provides the optimal Crysis Remastered experience on Xbox consoles – it’s great! However, VRR seems to be doing a good deal of heavy lifting here: without the feature being active, we are looking at something more in line with a 50-60fps experience. I prefer to see the DRS window widened to get closer to a locked 60 frames per second. Xbox Series S? I feel that 2160p is too high a target, even with limited 30 frames per second – there are too many drops below and with this low frame rate, VRR can not help the experience.
Performance mode is smoother on Series X, there is a closer lock to 60 frames per second that you can imagine with the much lower target resolution. However, busy areas still see some performance drops – which is surprising, given the enormous level of CPU and GPU power that is thrown at the game. Serie S? It is a disappointment to run at between 40-50 frames per second. It’s generally better than the Xbox One X running in the same mode, but there was always the feeling that we were CPU limited there, a bottleneck that should not apply to the Series S. It’s a bit confusing, to be honest. Beam tracking mode does not quite hit the target for Series X owners: it is the least high-performance mode of the gang, with the heaviest drops from the target 60 frames per second, to the point where not even a VRR screen can smooth over the experience. Interestingly, for the Series S with its 1080p30 target, this actually works pretty well – it’s certainly the most consistent Crysis experience on the lower Xbox console.
So in the end, we can not quite achieve the console 60fps dream on Xbox series consoles with this new update – and considering the performance levels achieved on Xbox One X, it is a bit disappointing. However, the experience can still impress: the Series X quality mode when paired with a VRR-compatible monitor certainly delivers the goods. As for the PlayStation 5 – we’ll be looking at this as soon as the game updates but pre-release, Crytek asked us to expect 1080p60 in performance and RT mode and 1800p60 in quality mode – all with dynamic resolution scaling in place, naturally enough. These resolution limits are related to the PS4 Pro’s corresponding outputs, if you’re wondering why they’s lower than Series X. This seems to be a limitation of the PS5’s ‘back-compat plus’ feature – but we’ll double check this and report on the overall performance as soon as we can.